How a Chance Encounter in Hot Yoga Changed My Career Trajectory
We’re shining the Support Centre spotlight on Katelyn Hack, Marketing Manager, who tells us how a hot yoga class became the catalyst for a rewarding career move, and how her childhood dream of becoming a vet doesn’t hold a candle to marketing in dentistry.
Tell me about your background – how long have you been with dentalcorp and what were you doing before you joined?
I have been with dentalcorp for just over two years. Before joining, I worked for a dental practice as a marketing team of one. Prior to working in the dental industry, I worked in public relations at a couple of Toronto agencies.
Have you always wanted to be in Marketing? What did you want to be when you were younger?
When I was a kid, I thought I was going to be a veterinarian. I really wanted a pet dog, and whenever I played with my stuffed animals, I would pretend I was running a veterinary clinic. However, despite my absolute love for animals, I soon discovered that I couldn’t stand the sight of blood, so that no longer seemed like a viable option. Marketing entered my life in high school. It was my favourite class in my senior year and led me to major in business in university. Many years later, I followed that path to becoming a Marketing Specialist and I haven’t looked back since. Also, I now have that dog I’ve always wanted – her name is Stevie, and she is a rescue from St. Lucia.
Can you tell me a bit about your role on your team? What does a typical day look like?
I don’t think there is a “typical” day for me on the marketing team and that’s what keeps things interesting! As a Practice Marketing Manager, I support a portfolio of Practices across the network with all things marketing. However, first and foremost, I make sure that they are set up with our digital marketing foundations. I also onboard new dentalcorp practices to our marketing strategy and playbook tactics.
Tell me something interesting that’s happened to you.
I absolutely love hot yoga. Before the pandemic, I would attend classes at a yoga studio down the street from me once or twice a week. One evening, while I was waiting to go into the studio, I happened to overhear the yoga instructor talking with someone about how she just started a new job as a Marketing Manager at dentalcorp. My ears instantly perked up at the words “marketing” and “dental”. As a Marketing Specialist for a dental practice, I remember thinking to myself, I need to introduce myself to this yoga instructor after class. I followed my gut and that is exactly what I did. That yoga instructor turned out to be Samantha Hughes (Sterne), Senior Marketing Manager at dentalcorp. We exchanged contact information, I shared my resume with her, and the rest is history. I’ve been with dentalcorp ever since.
Tell me something about yourself that your co-workers would never guess?
I used to work as a cashier at Sheridan Nurseries, a garden centre, in my teens and early twenties. It was my summer job during university. I was definitely not hired for my green thumb – but being surrounded by greenery for 4 summers instilled a strong appreciation for plants. So much so that I now have 14 houseplants of all different shapes, colours, and sizes in my downtown Toronto condominium.
What are your aspirations for personal and professional growth? Do you have a 5-year plan?
I don’t have a strict five-year plan because so much can change in just one year. The pandemic has been a great example of how life can throw a curveball, and you need to be able to adapt quickly. Five years ago, I was working at a communications agency and if you asked me then, I would have said I would still be working within that field. However, after taking courses in digital marketing, I knew that I wanted to shift my career path. No matter which way the path goes in the future, I hope to keep learning, growing, and challenging myself.
What advice do you have for new team members joining dentalcorp’s Support Centre?
It might seem obvious but ask lots of questions! Also, starting a new job anywhere can be intimidating. You will likely be inundated with new information, so to avoid feeling overwhelmed it’s important to practice self-care. Whether that is taking 20 minutes to eat your lunch without checking your email or going for a morning walk to start your day, remember to set some time aside for yourself.